On the second Tuesday of April, we begin with a spring perennial. King Félix Hernández dominated on Opening Day, but developed quad tightness in his second start on Sunday, a no-decision. He’s 1-0, but proof positive of what retired MLB pitcher Bobby Ojeda once said: after Opening Day, every pitcher is hurt. It’s just a matter of managing the pain.
Speaking of which: coming back from an injury-riddled 2014, Aníbal Sánchez won his first for the Tigers, but got trounced yesterday by the Pirates. The wheels came off in the home seventh for Sanchez (who actually struck out twice himself in the National League park)–he yielded two home runs, sandwiching a single from countryman Francisco Cervelli, and it was adiós, Aníbal.
In that game, Miguel Cabrera continued his phenomenal run with a 2-for-4 performance, keeping his average at a healthy .517. I can’t wait to see how he does when he fully recovers from that leg injury…
In addition to the perennials, the late bloomers and up-and-comers also are having fun. Third baseman Cesar Ramos of the Phillies drove in the winning runs as a pinch-hitter last Thursday against Washington. On Sunday, Odubel Herrera plated the winning run in the 10th to defeat the Nats yet again (as if relations between Venezuela and Washington aren’t frosty enough). Odubel should get a shot at some outfield time in a rebuilding, weak-hitting Philadelphia lineup which features Punto Fijo’s own Freddy Galvis at shortstop, too.
Freddy had a great first week at short, hitting .400 and going 3-for-3 against the Mets phenom Jacob deGrom in a losing cause yesterday. Odubel, you’ll all recall, was only the Rookie of the Year and MVP of the LVBP with my favorite team, the mighty Tiburones of La Guaira. Will Phillies fans be eating patacones instead of cheese steaks by September?
Here’s what I wrote about Herrera back in January:
Odubel Herrera, soon to be a Philadelphia Phillie, was named Rookie of the Year and Most Valuable Player. “I dedicate the award to my parents, my family, and my town,” said Herrera, who hails from San Jose de Heras, a small town on the southeast shore of Lake Maracaibo.
Get ready, Phillie fans: you may have a live one in young Mr. Herrera.
Once in a while, even I sound smart.
Also hot on Monday: Diamondbacks OF Ender “the Cannon” Enciarte went 3-for-5 in an 8-4 win over San Diego; in the other dugout, erstwhile Yankee Yangervis Solarte maintained a .368 BA with two hits. Today, Lara native Carlos “Cookie” Carrasco looks to keep his ERA at zero on the lovely shores of Lake Erie.